Elon Musk has confessed, of course, again on Twitter, about the latest opportunity to solve Tesla’s own service car problems: the company wants to transform Mercedes vans.
The idea of an electric van came up when Musk thought that Tesla now uses low-priced gasoline conventional powered transport services, while the brand almost declares that electromobilism is the future. Elon Musk made it clear that he saw the problem (contradiction even), but designing and presenting his own van was a distant goal.
“The order of priority is: Model Y, solar roof tiles, pickups, Semi, Roadster,” Elon Musk wrote. At the same time, Musk also added that Tesla could order empty Sprinter bodywork from Daimler and adapt its own electric drive-trains to it, to get a larger range.
Although Mercedes also manufactures an electric van – eVito is already available, and eSprinter will start manufacturing next year – the German propulsion system is relatively short-range, in line with European requirements. The eSprinter with the larger 55 kWh battery pack promises a 150-kilometer range. This could be almost double with Tesla’s largest 100 kWh battery.
A collaboration between Mercedes and Tesla is not new. The two companies had a strong relationship between 2009 and 2014 which had as a result the electric Smarts and the B-Class EV models – which used Tesla drivetrains. So the prospect of a Mercedes Sprinter modified by Tesla is not as peculiar as it seems.